“Flashlight,” off March album The G…The Growth & Development by ST 2 Lettaz, formerly of G-Side, slowly builds and then rings out like an earnest Explosion in the Sky song, all inward-gazing, epic-in-the-mind grandeur, perfect for ST’s small scale confessions: “This ain’t living and I don’t know where I’m going this Thanksgiving.” The track serves as a half-maudlin epilogue to the Huntsville rap story, finding hope in community and creativity, no longer in search of fleeting blog love. And so its video, directed by Tyler Barksdale, is a humble nod to the reality of rapping post-hype, and is one of the most affecting and well-observed of the year so far.
Kicking off with a quote from Walt Whitman — “The proof of a poet is that his country absorbs him as affectionately as he has absorbed it” — “Flashlight” finds a melancholy ST paging through magazine clips of his once-buzzing, now broken-up group G-Side. (Their feature in SPIN is taped to his wall). Fly-on-the-wall snapshots of ST and the rest of the Slow Motion Soundz crew hanging out together, chomping on burgers, recording music, and digging for records are intercut with shots of Huntsville locales and an impassioned streetball game. We also see ST, always an everyman, jump off the stage and shakes hands with an engaged crowd of fans toward the end.
Taking a Closer Look at the Stories Ignored by the Mainstream Media